Posts Tagged ‘Bret Hart’

WWE is backing an attempt to get WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart honored on Canada’s Walk of Fame. 

The Walk of Fame is currently talking nominations for 2019 spots. You can nominate The Hitman at this link. The Walk of Fame website notes the following on nominees:

The Canada’s Walk of Fame Honour is bestowed annually to Canadians who have excelled in one of our five pillars, and an Inductee is also selected posthumously as our Legend:

– Arts & Entertainment
– Business & Entrepreneurship
– Philanthropy & Humanities
– Science & Technology
– Sports & Athletics
– Legend

To date, there have been 180 inductions into Canada’s Walk of Fame. Each year an Executive Selection Committee (made up of Canada’s Walk of Fame Board and Executives) chooses the Inductees from a long list of deserving Canadians who fit the criteria. The Canadian public is encouraged to put forward their recommendations via the form below, by email or mail. All qualified public recommendations are then added to the list for the Executive Selection Committee.

Below is WWE’s announcement to help get Hart nominated:

Nominate WWE Hall of Famer Bret Hart for Canada’s Walk of Fame

With 2019 nominations open, the timing couldn’t be more perfect to help WWE Hall of Famer Bret “Hit Man” Hart take his well-deserved spot on Canada’s Walk of Fame.

While his achievements in the sports-entertainment world are staggering, Hart shares a kinship with The Great White North that speaks at an equally high volume. The five-time WWE Champion, Royal Rumblewinner and two-time WWE Hall of Famer’s family roots are firmly planted in Calgary, Alberta, Canada. His father, Stu Hart, is responsible for the legendary “Hart Family Dungeon,” which schooled some of the most technically-gifted Superstars to ever step foot inside the ring.

As the heart (or Hart) and soul of his native land, Hart has an enduring legacy that even led to a Western Hockey League team – the Calgary Hitmen – being named after the in-ring icon. Beyond Hart’s work in the ring, his legend has also been bolstered by his philanthropy, as he is the spokesperson of March of Dimes Canada’s Stroke Recovery Canada Program. 

With the Canada Walk of Fame honoring celebrities who embody the gracious spirit of Canada, who better to honor than The Best There Is, The Best There Was and The Best There Ever Will Be?

Click here to nominate The Excellence of Execution for his place on Canada’s Walk of Fame!

71AE1FB4-E4D5-4B49-B13B-9A569797E32E

Finally confirming a rumour doing the rounds for the past few months, WWE have announced, via Yahoo Sports, that legendary tag team The Hart Foundation will be inducted into this year’s Hall of Fame.

Bret ‘Hitman’ Hart and Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart – but notably, not manager Jimmy Hart, as tattle had previously suggested – will join the class of 2019 on Saturday 6 April at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center. Hart, alongside fellow honourees Shawn Michaels and Booker T, will become a two-time Hall of Famer at the event.

The names, it seems, are drying up. Ric Flair became the first man given a second ring back in 2012, when he was inducted for a second time as part of the Four Horsemen.

The originally villainous Hart Foundation began their successful WWE run back in 1985, twice winning championship gold in the company before Bret broke out as a major singles star. Despite his career with the promotion ending in bitter acrimony, his major contributions to the business were honoured at 2006’s Hall of Fame ceremony.

Jim Neidhart passed away in August 2018 at the age of 63-years-old. Daughter Natalya continues to perform for WWE, and is the most likely candidate to induct her father.

CCF38AC2-2DA2-40E0-95CF-C7D85F3A7BD3

On a recent installment of his X-PAC 12360 show, Sean Waltman spoke in-depth about the passings of Luke Perry and legendary WWE star, King Kong Bundy. He also recalled a funny story that occurred between Bundy and Bret Hart back in the mid-90’s.

Waltman revealed that he was actually in the process of bringing Luke Perry on to his show prior to his passing. He mentioned how Perry’s enthusiasm and passion for wrestling really carried through when he was talking about Dusty Rhodes.

“I didn’t even know [Luke Perry] was a big wrestling fan until… I watched him talking to Cody [Rhodes], and just how his eyes lit up talking about Dusty [Rhodes],” Waltman explained. “I have a voicemail from him, I was gonna pull it up… He’s [Rory Karpf], the one who set it up for Luke to come on the show. And Luke felt really bad, he was doing that Once Upon A Time in Hollywood, the Tarantino movie about Charles Manson, he was doing that and all kinds of stuff, and he still wanted to come on the show…There’s just this massive hole that can’t be filled, a lot of people go… and they didn’t really impact people’s lives that much in a positive way, they impacted their own lives. But it’s different when it’s somebody like that… You never get over this type of thing.”

Another devastating loss this week was that of legendary WWE star, King Kong Bundy. Waltman remembered when he first laid eyes on Bundy as a child watching WWE and the awe that his massive physique inspired.

“That’s what I woke up to this morning,” Waltman said. “We weren’t, like, buddies or anything. I was critical of Bundy in his last run when he came through WWE, but King Kong Bundy when I was a kid was just like, ‘Holy sh–.’

“My first memory of King Kong Bundy was on TBS, and he was a member of Legion of Doom. I remember when he turned – Bundy turned babyface. He was over like a motherfu—- as a babyface,” Waltman continued. “He was this big wide dude. It wasn’t like he has this huge, humongous gut. He was just a massive human being.”

Waltman remembered a funny story from when he and Bundy were still actively competing in the company together. At the time, Bundy apparently refused to tap out to then-WWE Champion Bret Hart.

“And funny story, Bundy comes back in the mid-90’s when I am there,” Waltman started. “I am 1-2-3 Kid, Bret’s champ, and they’re bringing him in, and they’re pushing him as a heel and trying to get him over. We’re over in Germany, it was an obscure spot show and it was Bret vs. Bundy, and Bundy didn’t want to tap out to the sharpshooter. He told Bret, ‘I’ve never given up in my whole career. I don’t want to start now.’ Like, he’s our f’n champ. Rest in peace, King Kong Bundy.”

F21E64C7-BD93-43A8-A201-820E5210E542

WWE have been slow to release this year’s Hall Of Fame inductees. At the very least, the company have usually announced the class headliner by this point, but with rumours of The Undertaker as a potential inductee still swirling, it looks like the original Hart Foundation are on their way in.

This is according to a new report from PWInsider, who claim that the group’s original trio of Jimmy Hart, Bret ‘The Hitman’ Hart, and Jim ‘The Anvil’ Neidhart will soon be confirmed for the Hall Of Fame’s class of 2019.

Bret and Jimmy are already part of the Hall Of Fame on their own. Neidhart, who passed away on 13 August 2018, is not.

What’s interesting about this induction is that there’s no sign of ‘Dangerous’ Danny Davis (who was with the group from 1987 to 1988), Owen Hart (part of The New Hart Foundation from 1994 onwards), or Brian Pillman and Davey Boy Smith, who helped reprise the group in 1997.

The original incarnation is, without question, the Foundation’s most legendary form, and their induction would suggest that the long-rumoured New World Order induction perhaps isn’t on the cards this coming April.

1f6d14ed-ac8d-437c-bdbb-25c184e7c59b

Before Glenn Jacobs was the Mayor of Knox County, Tennessee, he was “The Big Red Machine” Kane. But before he was Kane, Jacobs was forced into a number of failed characters. One of the most notable characters fans would remember is Isaac Yankem.

Jacobs was recently a guest on The Steve Austin Showand gave the backstory of how he was pitched the wrestling dentist gimmick. When he signed with WWE, Jacobs received a face-to-face meeting with WWE Chairman Vince McMahon himself, and it was the boss who delivered the news of what his character would be.

“[One] guy I owe a lot to is of course Jim Ross. Jim Rosswas on hiatus to WWE, but he was working as Jim Cornette’s announcer. Within a month or two, and of course Jim Ross likes big guys, so immediately he got me a tryout with WWE so I was super excited. I had to have my tryout match with Reno Riggins, and of course Reno was a great worker, and within literally a couple of days Jim Cornettetalks to me and says that they are going to sign me and that they want me. I was really excited and thought this is exactly what I wanted to do. I received a phone call to meet with Vince McMahon and at the time JJ Dillon was the Head of Talent Relations. They take me to the office in Stamford, Connecticut,” Jacobs said. “I am sitting in the room with JJ and Vince McMahon walks in. You hear all this stuff about Vince McMahon and how he is an evil genius and how he is going to get in your mind and figure out what you are thinking. We are sitting there and having small talk and everything is going well and Vince asked me if I had ever been afraid to go to the Dentist? I am thinking that this is one of those things where I am going through a personality test, so I said no sir. He said that he has always had this idea of a wrestling Dentist, ‘Isaac Yankem, I.Yankem.’ He starts doing the Vince laugh and I am looking at him like I am trying to break into the big leagues and I am blank faced and trying not to react, then he looks at me and says that he thinks that I would be great for it and then he walks out.”

Jacobs admitted that he wasn’t convinced that this gimmick would be a good idea, and it turned out he was right. He said he didn’t enjoy anything about the character, and he especially hated having to paint his teeth. He understandably felt out of place and inferior to the other WWE superstars.

“I am sitting there at first like I am on top of the world to now the world feeling like it is falling down on me. Wrestling Dentist? How am I going to pull this off? I spoke with Jim Cornette and told him that I don’t know about this whole Dentist thing. He says to me, ‘Oh, it will be fine. That is just his first thought. They will eventually come up with something cool.’ Two months later I speak with Cornette and he is working in creative with WWE. He tells me that the good news is that you are going to be coming up really soon, but the bad news is you are coming up as the dentist. I was thinking, oh man, but what was I going to do? If I wanted to advance my career basically I had to take a shot,” he said. “It just got worse. I had to put paint on my teeth to make it look like my teeth were in decay. Everyone else had this cool music but I had this drill and I was thinking, golly. I just wasn’t ready to do it. I am sitting and watching The Undertaker and now I am in the ring with him and business was a little different back then. Undertaker was one of the few guys who took me under their wings, but a lot of the other guys it was just about them. It wasn’t the best experience, let me put it that way. Now they made an action figure about it. I will never get away from it.”

It wasn’t all bad, however, as Jacobs was able to find a bright spot from his short time as Isaac Yankem. He was able to work a program with Bret Hart, and Jacobs said he relished the experience. His only wish was that he could have worked with Hart when he was Kane.

“The thing about the Isaac Yankem character was that despite never considering it a success it was a success and it got my foot in the door. It showed Vince McMahon that I had a work ethic and I wanted to do this but the character just wasn’t for me or felt comfortable doing. I had the opportunity of working with guys like Bret Hart, who legitimately is one of the best of all-time,” he said. “My first match was at SummerSlam and it was against Bret Hart. We were the semi-main event. It doesn’t get any bigger than that. Bret has always been good to me. Luckily, I had much more success with the Kane character and I think looking back now, I wish I was doing Kane when Bret Hart was still in WWE. I think we could have had some killer matches, but yeah, he was always great to me and working with him was a tremendous experience.”

Jacobs also discussed another failed character, Fake Diesel. He said he thought the concept was good in theory, but it would never have worked because Jim Ross could never work as a heel. Even so, he was happy not to be Isaac Yankem anymore.

“Ironically, I think Gerald Brisco told me while we were in South Africa or Kuwait, I can’t remember which one, but he told me that Vince McMahon wanted to talk to me when I got home. I came home from overseas and Vince explains to me what they want to do and that I am going to be the fake Diesel. The concept of the storyline was excellent,” he said. “What had happened was that JR was going to turn heel and that he was going to reveal that he was the creative mastermind of WWE’s success and it was going to be me and the fake Razor Ramon. The problem is that JR is not likened to a heel character because people really like him so that didn’t work very well. When we are looking at storylines, yes, the concept is great but it just doesn’t work in reality because a lot of what we do is based on the audience to accept that and they didn’t really accept this whole thing. No matter what, it was the fake Diesel and the fake Razor Ramon. At least I wasn’t a dentist anymore.”

Owen Hart passed away during a tragic accident on live pay-per-view. His death during Over The Edge on May 23rd, 1999 resulted in an out of court settlement with WWE for approximately $18 million on November 2nd, 2000. Owen’s widow Martha Hart has been adamant about not associating her husband’s name with WWE since.

Davey Boy Smith, Jr. recently joined X-Pac 12360 and opened up about Owen’s absence from the WWE Hall Of Fame.

“I wish Owen could get inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame but unfortunately, it doesn’t look like it’s gonna happen. The only way I could see it happening… is like Martha [Hart], her deal is that she doesn’t want WWE to make a profit off of it.

“I can’t speak for Martha, but if WWE were to say, ‘okay we’re gonna induct Owen Hart into the Hall of Fame and earnings or whatever profits we make will be donated to the Owen Hart Foundation,’ I think she might be more willing to do something like that. But even then I don’t think she’s gonna let that happen. I understand where she’s coming from, she was Owen’s wife, that’s fair, I can’t really argue that. I do think it would be great for him to be inducted.”

Owen was recently inducted into the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall Of Fame and many members of the Hart Family including Smith Jr. were present although Martha and Bret Hart were unable to attend.

Bret Hart recently spoke about Martha’s unwillingness to allow Owen’s place in the WWE Hall Of Fame during a July interview with CBS’ In This CornerMark Henry made a plea for Owen’s WWE Hall Of Fame induction during his own induction speech during this year’s ceremony and Hart echoed that sentiment.

“I think Martha, Owen’s widow she’s a very obtuse, square-headed person,” Hart said. “I think she’s done more to erase my brother Owen’s memory than she ever did to remember him. I think it really bothers me that the fans that loved Owen so much didn’t get a chance to remember him. You do these kind of things for people are here, left to remember them.

“I mean Owen, it would never matter to him if he was in the Hall Of Fame but I think that you know it would mean a lot to different family members in my family. I know Mark Henry as an example gave a strong speech or talk this year about getting Owen into the Hall Of Fame and I totally agree.”

Martha replied to Bret via a press release saying The Hitman’s comments were “reckless, irresponsible, and clearly untrue.”

“Bret’s comments are rooted in the fact that I have steadfastly refused to work with the WWE to exploit Owen’s image for commercial gain,” Martha continued. “Owen was an incredible entertainer and I know that his many fans around the world enjoyed his wrestling career immensely. I encourage them to continue to do so. But I am firm in my belief that the WWE was responsible for Owen’s death. As a result, I cannot and will not support any efforts by the WWE to profit from Owen’s memory.

“Bret Hart’s comments are disrespectful and cruel. It is disappointing that so many in the media have chosen to report them without seeking my perspective. Whatever Bret may believe, the fact is that, far from “erasing” Owen’s memory, I have devoted the last 20 years to celebrating his life in a very public way. I can think of very few people who have been remembered so glowingly by their spouse.”

Bret followed-up his previous stance via a Facebook post explaining why he wants to see his brother take a place in the WWE Hall Of Fame, but he gave a glowing endorsement to the George Tragos/Lou Thesz Professional Wrestling Hall Of Fame, an honor Bret received in 2006 as well. He once again brought up Henry’s request for Owen’s WWE Hall Of Fame induction while noting that the professional wrestling fans Martha sat next to during all of the Stampede Wrestling shows they used to attend are some of the same people who desperately want to see Owen’s induction as well.

“Earlier this year, Mark Henry took time during his WWE Hall of Fame induction to specifically address Martha. With tears in his eyes, Henry pleaded with her to allow Owen to be inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame. My nieces and nephews were in the audience with tears in their eyes as he expressed how much he deserved to be there with his peers. Fans have told me they had tears in their eyes when they watched the moment on television. Those same fans Martha sat side-by-side with at Stampede Wrestling and WWE events. Those same fans that donate to the Owen Hart Foundation and helped make it what it is today because they remember the joy he brought to their lives and not by how he died. Those royalty checks she receives from the company she says she doesn’t want any part of? Those are also from those same fans. To her, their tears do not matter. To me, that is cruel and hurtful.

“It is true that Martha and I were close at one time. I was right by her side after Owen’s death until she received her settlement from WWE and proclaimed me a “pest”. Martha later declared herself and her children Harts in name only, called us all “black sheep”, and ceased contact with the rest of the Hart family. She further isolated from us when we all came together in 2010 to honour our father Stu being inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame and participated in a DVD that celebrated our family (Hart & Soul). Owen’s children do not have a relationship with his brothers, sisters, nieces, nephews, and cousins. One of my nieces, in fact, named her son Owen after him. I do not know Oje and I wouldn’t know Athena if she walked passed me on the street. Owen’s children only know of their father’s family by what is told by their mother, whatever that may be, painting us all with one broad brush. To block Owen’s children from knowing their father’s family, to me, is cruel, reckless, and irresponsible.”

Seth Rollins recently spoke to GiveMeSport where he discussed what it was like to have a close working relationship with Vince McMahon. He praised McMahon for maintaining his passion for the business after all these years as he continues to work hard into his seventies.

“Vince is great. He’s fantastic first off. My relationship with him is very, very good. He’s just such an eccentric dude. He’s always got something for ya. He’s 71-years-old now and he’s sharp as a knife so he’s a lot of fun to be around. He’s always got good feedback. Still watches it, still loves it. That’s the crazy thing.

“He still comes to work every single week and he still loves it. He still loves what he does. He loves being around it, he loves watching it, analyzing it, thinking about it. So it’s just cool to be around a guy like that.”

Rollins addressed the backstage reaction to comments Bret Hart made in 2016 when he said The Architect is unsafe in the ring. This came after Finn Balorsuffered a shoulder injury following a bucklebomb to the barricade from Rollins at SummerSlam 2016. He said people backstage didn’t take the comments too seriously and were also supportive.

“I have no idea if [McMahon] even knew what Bret was saying about me as far as that’s concerned,” Rollins continued. But yeah, I got support from guys in the locker room who were like, ‘what is this guy even talking about? Why is he saying this stuff? It’s just ridiculous.’

“So yeah, it was here and there but most people really didn’t take it too seriously because it was so off the wall. So yeah people just make jokes about it for the most part.”